Unemployment drop welcomed

Your questions answered by our Benefits Expert.
Your questions answered by our Benefits Expert.

The future of the St Helens jobs market looks bright as the number of people claiming out-of-work benefits falls.

The latest labour market figures showed there were 3,125 residents claiming financial help as they were unemployed in May 2017.

Local employers are continuing to work with us and showing they need to recruit staff

Clive Morris

That represents a four per cent drop on this time last year and the number of 18-to-24-year-olds claiming has dropped by 11 per cent in 12 months.

The figure recorded is also the lowest for St Helens since January this year.

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) hailed the work being done getting St Helens residents into jobs and said it was particularly heartened by the amount of long-term recruitment going on.

Clive Morris, DWP representative for Merseyside, said: “The figures, especially for young people, are really encouraging and that decrease is seen across Merseyside.

“Local employers are continuing to work with us and showing they need to recruit staff.

“The Jobcentre Plus has been working with a number of different customer groups over the past few months.

“We’ve had hospitality events with hotels and restaurants coming along, worked with people who’ve got no employment history at all and run jobs clubs for older people ensuring they are up-to-date with the latest labour markets trends.

“We’re also working with BT filling roles at its customer care centre and we are encouraging St Helens residents with transport to look at the jobs a well-known online retailer is creating in Warrington.”

The figures show there were 1,910 men and 1,210 women claiming out-of-work benefits in St Helens in May, with 760 claimants in the 18-to-24 age bracket.

The number of people in work in the North West is at a record high of 3.45 million, with the region also boasting an unemployment rate of 4.2 per cent compared to the national average of 4.6 per cent.